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Understanding geology of the Biblical world is a great help to understanding the geography, economies, and cultures of the Bible.  The type of rock in the region determined the living conditions of the people in that region.  So, knowing something about the Biblical geology helps us have an idea what people from the time of the Bible had to deal with.

Limestone is Everywhere!


There are three general categories of rock in Israel: Eocene, Senonian, and Cenomanian. Eocene limestone covers the Shephelah of Carmel and Judah as well as central Samaria. It forms a hard nari cust, but also produces semi-productive brown soil. When it is eroded from the hills, also known as anti-synclines, it washes into valleys, synclines, and creates alluvium.


The Senonian chalks erode easily, but cover the Judean Wilderness because rain barely ever comes there. It is mostly only useful for growing the scruffy grasses which the sheep and goats graze on.


The Cenomanian is hard limestone which erodes into deep V-shaped valleys. Cenomanian limestone is the stone used for building. It is a bedded stone and thus, it erodes in a terraced form. This makes the farmer’s job easier. He simply builds a wall on the edge of each terrace, fills in the space with the terra rosa soil that comes from this stone, and voila! He has an excellent place to grow almonds, olives, and grapes.